International Women’s Day was first marked in New York in 1908 when women marched to demand shorter working hours, and the right to vote.
In 1975 it was officially recognized by the United Nations. Every year there has been a theme to it. 2016’s theme was pledge for parity. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau released a statement recognizing the ongoing struggle. “While we have made enormous progress towards equality over the years, we know that we still have a lot of hard work to do,” Trudeau said. Trudeau’s cabinet is completely gender equal.
He took the opportunity to launch a social media campaign. “I also urge you to take part in the Government of Canada #YouAreEmpowerment campaign to honour a woman who has inspired you,” Trudeau said.
British Columbia Premier Christy Clark reflected on how far women have come. She wants people to reflect on how bring the dream of parity to life. “I encourage you to reflect on how you can help promote equality and opportunity for future generations.” Clark has committed to equality placing women in the ranks of cabinet, public service, and as 40% of board appointees.
Raitt Recognizes Martin’s Contribution
Milton M.P. Lisa Raitt made International Women’s Day more personal. She paid tribute to Milton Chamber of Commerce’s Executive Director Sandy Martin in a statement in the House of Commons. “Sandy is a proud Miltonian that has watched our community grow,” Raitt said. Watch the full statement on Raitt’s Facebook page. Martin retires at the end of next month.